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Meghalaya to showcase living root bridge at R-Day parade

New Delhi, Jan 22 (IANS) Meghalaya, the abode of clouds, will showcase the double-decker living root bridge, a unique natural phenomenon shaped by human ingenuity, in its tableau for the Republic Day parade.

The Khasi and Jaintia people of the state are known for bridging the gaps by using the secondary roots of trees. Locally known as “Jingkieng Diengjri”, it literally means rubber tree bridge.

Most of these bridges are made by stretching roots of a single tree, planted on one side of a stream or river. It takes about 30 years to build such a bridge.

Some of these bridges are claimed to be over 200 years old, outliving the bridges made through modern technology.

“The living root bridges are known for their ability to keep growing, bear and shed leaves as the seasons come and go,” said a senior government official.

This two-tier living root bridge, to be showcased on the Rajpath, is also one such bio-engineering wonder located at Nongriat village, southwest of Tyrna village, in the East Khasi Hills district.

It takes about two-and-half-hour trek to the bridge with steep descent of about 2,200 feet from the Tyrna village.

“It presents a panorama of lush, rolling hills, heather-covered slopes, breathtakingly beautiful cascades, mountain springs moving mists, silent lakes, and a multitude of flora and fauna, including rare and unique marvels, like the living root bridge,” said the official.

Meghalaya is often likened to Scotland for its topography, scenic beauty and vegetation.

–IANS

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